I just got back from New York City where I spend the day listening to some of the top brands dive into their mobile strategy.
Mobile Marketer hosts the FirstLook conference where brands are really pushed to share what’s been working in their strategy, their results and their plans for the upcoming year.
It was a small intimate show and every speaker had a line of people ready to ask questions so it was tough to get my quick snippets BUT I did line up some fun interviews for the show in the near next month or two.
As brands such as Coca-Cola, Sephora, MillerCoors, Nissan, MoMA, Citi and JetBlue spoke I jotted down as many notes as I could and wanted to share the key insights and takeaways from the show.
Here are the key insights, quotes and takeaways from each of the speakers:
Tom Daly of Coca-Cola was the opening keynote speaker and he set the tone by saying:
He discussed that there is a paradox of today’s consumer and that is:
- The consumer will be ever more connected.
- Consumers will be ever more difficult to connect with.
Yet, mobile gives us one of the best opportunities to connect with these consumers in the most intimate and personal way available to date.
My favorite part of Tom’s presentation was when he was describing us mobile marketers:
I’ve found this to be true myself in my experiences. As mobile marketers we need to understand how mobile can add value to both the consumer experience and even internally within the organization.
I’ve always found Coca-Cola fascinating when it comes to their mobile strategy as they are frequently mentioned to focus 70% of their mobile budget on SMS because it’s the most efficient channel for them globally.
Mr. Daly shared Coca-Cola’s core areas of focus when it comes to mobile. You’ll notice they really only focus on 6 key areas that work for them. Your focus areas may be different.
Mobile Best Practice Tips: Manage The Present While Inventing The Future
- START thinking about the mobile opportunity across the entire business
- STOP making it complicated
- START focusing on transactions
- STOP talking about things that get web content onto a mobile device
- START settling on partners and ironing out the operational stuff
- STOP distinctions without difference
- START connecting things together
- STOP waiting
As you can see when thinking about mobile, even the worlds largest brand keeps their strategy and focus as simplified as possible. I know it’s easy to get caught up in all of the options available to us. We as humans have too many choices often preventing us from moving forward but Daly said it best…
A great place to start is to ask yourself this one question.
Johnna Marcus of Sephora really dove into some numbers on how mobile has impacted their business this year. Their web and email are critical in how their customers connect with them as you can see below:
Johnna shared how loyal their customers are which gives them the ability to roll out new tests and quickly have feedback from customers.
Having loyal customers really allows you to hear what your customer really wants. One of my favorite takeaways was Johnna’s recommendation:
It’s not about mobile for mobile sake. Make sure you’re delivering value and enhancing their experience.
A key initiave for Sephora during the holiday season was the concept of the “Endless Aisle” in which customers could check out 11 of the hottest gift ideas for the holiday.
These products were promoted by driving customers to scan a QR code from signage placed at the end of aisles.
Products ordered from mobile were delivered to their home.
This campaign as well as mobile gift cards turned out to be a huge success and key component of their holiday success.
In 2012, Sephora’s will focus on:
- Continued support of their integration with Apple Passbook
- Mobile gifts
- Enhancing their apps for the customer experience
- Continued innovation
This was one of my favorite presentations for a lot of reasons. Many quotes resonated with me which I believe encapsulate many of my thoughts on mobile.
Key quotes from Nissan
This quote came right after he took us through photos of iPhones, tablets and laptops and asked if each were considered mobile. He made it clear that that was the wrong question to be asking. Mobile comes down to screen resolution and context per Scott Cottick.
He mentioned an old marketing proverb stating you should fish where the fish are which lead to:
Scott went to mention that they found success by “failing, fast forward” meaning that when the executed something, they’d quickly figure out wasn’t working and optimize.There had been a lot of talk this year of making sure your website was mobile friendly but Scott said:
Why is it table stakes? Well, your customers expect you to have a pleasant experience no matter what screen resolution or context they are in.
Although table stakes, Nissan looks to mobile web as a critical piece of their business with 20% of all sales leads coming mobile while 15% of all site traffic comes from a mobile device.
Mobile is the one channel that weaves all of your marketing and customer interactions together. As such it’s a very dependent marketing channel. Like Scott, we believe:
Nissan’s key recommendations for those diving in:
STOP debating what devices are mobile
- START identifying the right experience for the right screen.
- STOP building apps to check the box.
- START creating experiences based on needs.
- STOP reacting and creating one-offs.
- START thinking long term but execute in baby steps.
- START working with the right partners.
Steve Mera of MillerCoors started out his presentation saying that “mobile is key for my guys’. He continued to explain that he was not being sexist but that he refers to the MillerCoors customer as “my guys” because they know exactly who their customer is – males 21-34.
I helped you to to define your audience in the Mobile Marketing Toolkit so that your message is speaking to one person and this is a great example.
Knowing their customer has been a key to their success. Unlike many brands,
Android makes up 75% of their mobile web usage
If you thought SMS was unsexy or going away your’e wrong.
When it comes to business, Steve mentioned you have the things that you know work and are a key essentials of your business. He used a sports reference stating that:
MillerCoors uses what they call “light touch” engagements in which they sponsor apps and insert interactive ads into apps and mobile web experiences that are relevant to their customers and their proximity to retailers or bars that sell their product.
Simultaneously, they execute deep engagement programs leveraging SMS to connect on a one-to-one level with customers and drive usage.
Going into 2012, MillerCoors recommends you:
- Start with your insights to build a solid foundation
- Add your ideas to facilitate action based on your insights
- Alight yourself with the right partners to reach your goals
- Test, learn and scale everything you execute
- Socialize with your audience to learn and spread the news
You should be familiar with Jonathan Stephen as he’s been on the show before but in his presentation he shared some numbers on their brand refresh of 2012 and what they look to accomplish in 2013.
The overall tone of Jetblue’s brand refresh was based on giving the customer what they want. They’ve done tons of research to make sure they know how their customer engages with them throughout their travel experience.
Over 2 million downloads in first year acroos all platforms
- TrueBlue Loyalty Program Enrollments – 10% monthly increase from mobile alone
- 2012 Gold winner W3 awards
- 2012 Best In Clas for Airlines – Interactive Media Awards
- 2012 Silver Winner The International Davy Awards
- Mobile Favorite Website Awards 2012
- Smarter Travel Top 10 Best Travel Apps of 2012
In 2013 JetBLue will look to integrate with Passbook, add NFC functionality and more. As you get started, Jonathan’s advice for you is to:
Focus On The Goals
- Understand what devices YOUR customers are using.
- Understand HOW they access your content.
- Ensure your content is accessible AND consumable across various platforms.
- Create a mobile strategy that accomplishes YOUR company goals…No, an app is not a mobile strategy!
- Understand what business problem you are trying to solve and or optimize.
There you have it. This was your sneak peak into how big brands think about and approach mobile. Although these brands are large and possibly ahead of you within their mobile integrations they started where you are so take their recommendations when diving in.
Now it’s your turn!
What are you going to focus on in 2013? Share your goals in the comments below and we’ll hold you accountable for it and even check in with you halfway through the year. What are you waiting for?